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# C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS

## Dr. Andy Field Page 1 10/12/2005

Factor Analysis Using SPSS
The theory of factor analysis was described in your lecture, or read Field (2005) Chapter 15.
Example
Factor analysis is frequently used to develop questionnaires: after all if you want to measure
an ability or trait, you need to ensure that the questions asked relate to the construct that you
intend to measure. I have noticed that a lot of students become very stressed about SPSS.
Therefore I wanted to design a questionnaire to measure a trait that I termed SPSS anxiety. I
decided to devise a questionnaire to measure various aspects of students anxiety towards
learning SPSS. I generated questions based on interviews with anxious and non-anxious
students and came up with 23 possible questions to include. Each question was a statement
followed by a five-point Likert scale ranging from strongly disagree through neither agree or
disagree to strongly agree. The questionnaire is printed in Field (2005, p. 639).
The questionnaire was designed to predict how anxious a given individual would be about
learning how to use SPSS. Whats more, I wanted to know whether anxiety about SPSS could
be broken down into specific forms of anxiety. So, in other words, are there other traits that
might contribute to anxiety about SPSS? With a little help from a few lecturer friends I
collected 2571 completed questionnaires (at this point it should become apparent that this
example is fictitious!). The data are stored in the file SAQ.sav.

Questionnaires are made up of multiple items each of which elicits a
response from the same person. As such, it is a repeated measures design.
Given we know that repeated measures go in different columns, different
questions on a questionnaire should each have their own column in SPSS.
Initial Considerations
Sample Size
Correlation coefficients fluctuate from sample to sample, much more so in small samples than
in large. Therefore, the reliability of factor analysis is also dependent on sample size. Field
(2005) reviews many suggestions about the sample size necessary for factor analysis and
concludes that it depends on many things. In general over 300 cases is probably adequate but
communalities after extraction should probably be above 0.5 (see Field, 2005).
Data Screening
SPSS will nearly always find a factor solution to a set of variables. However, the solution is
unlikely to have any real meaning if the variables analysed are not sensible. The first thing to
do when conducting a factor analysis is to look at the inter-correlation between variables. If
our test questions measure the same underlying dimension (or dimensions) then we would
expect them to correlate with each other (because they are measuring the same thing). If we
find any variables that do not correlate with any other variables (or very few) then you should
consider excluding these variables before the factor analysis is run. The correlations between
variables can be checked using the correlate procedure (see Chapter 4) to create a correlation
matrix of all variables. This matrix can also be created as part of the main factor analysis.
The opposite problem is when variables correlate too highly. Although mild multicollinearity is
not a problem for factor analysis it is important to avoid extreme multicollinearity (i.e.
variables that are very highly correlated) and singularity (variables that are perfectly
correlated). As with regression, singularity causes problems in factor analysis because it
becomes impossible to determine the unique contribution to a factor of the variables that are
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 2 10/12/2005
highly correlated (as was the case for multiple regression). Therefore, at this early stage we
look to eliminate any variables that dont correlate with any other variables or that correlate
very highly with other variables (R < .9). Multicollinearity can be detected by looking at the
determinant of the R-matrix (see next section).
As well as looking for interrelations, you should ensure that variables have roughly normal
distributions and are measured at an interval level (which Likert scales are, perhaps wrongly,
assumed to be!). The assumption of normality is important only if you wish to generalize the
results of your analysis beyond the sample collected.
Running the Analysis
Access the main dialog box (Figure 1) by using the AnalyzeData ReductionFactor
menu path. Simply select the variables you want to include in the analysis (remember to
exclude any variables that were identified as problematic during the data screening) and
transfer them to the box labelled Variables by clicking on .

Figure 1: Main dialog box for factor analysis
There are several options available, the first of which can be accessed by clicking on to
access the dialog box in Figure 2. The Coefficients option produces the R-matrix, and the
Significance levels option will produce a matrix indicating the significance value of each
correlation in the R-matrix. You can also ask for the Determinant of this matrix and this option
is vital for testing for multicollinearity or singularity. The determinant of the R-matrix should
be greater than 0.00001; if it is less than this value then look through the correlation matrix
for variables that correlate very highly (R > .8) and consider eliminating one of the variables
(or more depending on the extent of the problem) before proceeding. The choice of which of
the two variables to eliminate will be fairly arbitrary and finding multicollinearity in the data
should raise questions about the choice of items within your questionnaire.

Figure 2: Descriptives in factor analysis
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 3 10/12/2005
KMO and Bartletts test of sphericity produces the Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin measure of sampling
adequacy and Bartletts test (see Field, 2005, Chapters 11 & 12). The value of KMO should be
greater than 0.5 if the sample is adequate.
Factor Extraction on SPSS
Click on to access the extraction dialog box (Figure 3). There are several ways to
conduct factor analysis and the choice of method depends on many things (see Field, 2005).
For our purposes we will use principal component analysis, which strictly speaking isnt factor
analysis; however, the two procedures often yield similar results (see Field, 2005, 15.3.3).
The Display box has two options: to display the Unrotated factor solution and a Scree plot. The
scree plot was described earlier and is a useful way of establishing how many factors should be
retained in an analysis. The unrotated factor solution is useful in assessing the improvement of
interpretation due to rotation. If the rotated solution is little better than the unrotated solution
then it is possible that an inappropriate (or less optimal) rotation method has been used.

Figure 3: Dialog box for factor extraction
The Extract box provides options pertaining to the retention of factors. You have the choice of
either selecting factors with eigenvalues greater than a user-specified value or retaining a fixed
number of factors. For the Eigenvalues over option the default is Kaisers recommendation of
eigenvalues over 1. It is probably best to run a primary analysis with the Eigenvalues over 1
option selected, select a scree plot, and compare the results. If looking at the scree plot and
the eigenvalues over 1 lead you to retain the same number of factors then continue with the
analysis and be happy. If the two criteria give different results then examine the
communalities and decide for yourself which of the two criteria to believe. If you decide to use
the scree plot then you may want to redo the analysis specifying the number of factors to
extract. The number of factors to be extracted can be specified by selecting Number of factors
and then typing the appropriate number in the space provided (e.g. 4).
Rotation
The interpretability of factors can be improved through rotation. Rotation maximizes the
loading of each variable on one of the extracted factors whilst minimizing the loading on all
other factors. Rotation works through changing the absolute values of the variables whilst
keeping their differential values constant. Click on to access the dialog box in Figure 4.
Varimax, quartimax and equamax are orthogonal rotations whereas direct oblimin and promax
are oblique rotations (see Field 2005). The exact choice of rotation depends largely on whether
or not you think that the underlying factors should be related. If you expect the factors to be
independent then you should choose one of the orthogonal rotations (I recommend varimax).
If, however, there are theoretical grounds for supposing that your factors might correlate then
direct oblimin should be selected. For this example, choose an orthogonal rotation.
The dialog box also has options for displaying the Rotated solution. The rotated solution is
displayed by default and is essential for interpreting the final rotated analysis.
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 4 10/12/2005

Figure 4: Factor analysis: rotation dialog box
Scores
The factor scores dialog box can be accessed by clicking in the main dialog box. This
option allows you to save factor scores for each subject in the data editor. SPSS creates a new
column for each factor extracted and then places the factor score for each subject within that
column. These scores can then be used for further analysis, or simply to identify groups of
subjects who score highly on particular factors. There are three methods of obtaining these
scores, all of which were described in sections 15.2.3. and 15.5.3. of Field (2005).

Figure 5: Factor analysis: factor scores dialog box
Options
Click on in the main dialog box. By default SPSS will list variables in the order in which
they are entered into the data editor. Although this format is often convenient, when
interpreting factors it can be useful to list variables by size. By selecting Sorted by size, SPSS
will order the variables by their factor loadings. There is also the option to Suppress absolute
values less than a specified value (by default 0.1). This option ensures that factor loadings
within 0.1 are not displayed in the output. This option is useful for assisting in interpretation;
however, it can be helpful to increase the default value of 0.1 to either 0.4 or a value reflecting
the expected value of a significant factor loading given the sample size (see Field section
15.3.6.2.). For this example set the value at 0.4.

Figure 6: Factor analysis: options dialog box
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 5 10/12/2005
Interpreting Output from SPSS
Select the same options as I have in the screen diagrams and run a factor analysis with
orthogonal rotation. To save space each variable is referred to only by its label on the data
editor (e.g. Q12). On the output you obtain, you should find that the SPSS uses the value label
(the question itself) in all of the output. When using the output in this chapter just remember
that Q1 represents question 1, Q2 represents question 2 and Q17 represents question 17.
Preliminary Analysis
SPSS Output 1 shows an abridged version of the R-matrix. The top half of this table contains
the Pearson correlation coefficient between all pairs of questions whereas the bottom half
contains the one-tailed significance of these coefficients. We can use this correlation matrix to
check the pattern of relationships. First, scan the significance values and look for any variable
for which the majority of values are greater than 0.05. Then scan the correlation coefficients
themselves and look for any greater than 0.9. If any are found then you should be aware that
a problem could arise because of singularity in the data: check the determinant of the
correlation matrix and, if necessary, eliminate one of the two variables causing the problem.
The determinant is listed at the bottom of the matrix (blink and youll miss it). For these data
its value is 5.271E04 (which is 0.0005271) which is greater than the necessary value of
0.00001. Therefore, multicollinearity is not a problem for these data. To sum up, all questions
in the SAQ correlate fairly well and none of the correlation coefficients are particularly large;
therefore, there is no need to consider eliminating any questions at this stage.
Correlation Matrix
a
1.000 -.099 -.337 .436 .402 -.189 .214 .329 -.104 -.004
-.099 1.000 .318 -.112 -.119 .203 -.202 -.205 .231 .100
-.337 .318 1.000 -.380 -.310 .342 -.325 -.417 .204 .150
.436 -.112 -.380 1.000 .401 -.186 .243 .410 -.098 -.034
.402 -.119 -.310 .401 1.000 -.165 .200 .335 -.133 -.042
.217 -.074 -.227 .278 .257 -.167 .101 .272 -.165 -.069
.305 -.159 -.382 .409 .339 -.269 .221 .483 -.168 -.070
.331 -.050 -.259 .349 .269 -.159 .175 .296 -.079 -.050
-.092 .315 .300 -.125 -.096 .249 -.159 -.136 .257 .171
.214 -.084 -.193 .216 .258 -.127 .084 .193 -.131 -.062
.357 -.144 -.351 .369 .298 -.200 .255 .346 -.162 -.086
.345 -.195 -.410 .442 .347 -.267 .298 .441 -.167 -.046
.355 -.143 -.318 .344 .302 -.227 .204 .374 -.195 -.053
.338 -.165 -.371 .351 .315 -.254 .226 .399 -.170 -.048
.246 -.165 -.312 .334 .261 -.210 .206 .300 -.168 -.062
.499 -.168 -.419 .416 .395 -.267 .265 .421 -.156 -.082
.371 -.087 -.327 .383 .310 -.163 .205 .363 -.126 -.092
.347 -.164 -.375 .382 .322 -.257 .235 .430 -.160 -.080
-.189 .203 .342 -.186 -.165 1.000 -.249 -.275 .234 .122
.214 -.202 -.325 .243 .200 -.249 1.000 .468 -.100 -.035
.329 -.205 -.417 .410 .335 -.275 .468 1.000 -.129 -.068
-.104 .231 .204 -.098 -.133 .234 -.100 -.129 1.000 .230
-.004 .100 .150 -.034 -.042 .122 -.035 -.068 .230 1.000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .410
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .043
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .017
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .006 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .005
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .001
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .009
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .004
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .007
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .001
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .039
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000 .000
.410 .000 .000 .043 .017 .000 .039 .000 .000
Q01
Q02
Q03
Q04
Q05
Q06
Q07
Q08
Q09
Q10
Q11
Q12
Q13
Q14
Q15
Q16
Q17
Q18
Q19
Q20
Q21
Q22
Q23
Q01
Q02
Q03
Q04
Q05
Q06
Q07
Q08
Q09
Q10
Q11
Q12
Q13
Q14
Q15
Q16
Q17
Q18
Q19
Q20
Q21
Q22
Q23
Correlation
Sig. (1-tailed)
Q01 Q02 Q03 Q04 Q05 Q19 Q20 Q21 Q22 Q23
Determinant = 5.271E-04 a.

SPSS Output 1
SPSS Output 2 shows several very important parts of the output: the Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin
measure of sampling adequacy and Bartlett's test of sphericity. The KMO statistic varies
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 6 10/12/2005
between 0 and 1. A value of 0
indicates that the sum of partial
correlations is large relative to the
sum of correlations, indicating
diffusion in the pattern of
correlations (hence, factor analysis
is likely to be inappropriate). A
value close to 1 indicates that
patterns of correlations are
relatively compact and so factor
analysis should yield distinct and reliable factors. Kaiser (1974) recommends accepting values
greater than 0.5 as acceptable (values below this should lead you to either collect more data
or rethink which variables to include). Furthermore, values between 0.5 and 0.7 are mediocre,
values between 0.7 and 0.8 are good, values between 0.8 and 0.9 are great and values above
0.9 are superb (see Hutcheson and Sofroniou, 1999, pp.224-225 for more detail). For these
data the value is 0.93, which falls into the range of being superb: so, we should be confident
that factor analysis is appropriate for these data.
Bartlett's measure tests the null hypothesis that the original correlation matrix is an identity
matrix. For factor analysis to work we need some relationships between variables and if the R-
matrix were an identity matrix then all correlation coefficients would be zero. Therefore, we
want this test to be significant (i.e. have a significance value less than 0.05). A significant test
tells us that the R-matrix is not an identity matrix; therefore, there are some relationships
between the variables we hope to include in the analysis. For these data, Bartlett's test is
highly significant (p < 0.001), and therefore factor analysis is appropriate.
Factor Extraction
SPSS Output 3 lists the eigenvalues associated with each linear component (factor) before
extraction, after extraction and after rotation. Before extraction, SPSS has identified 23 linear
components within the data set (we know that there should be as many eigenvectors as there
are variables and so there will be as many factors as variables). The eigenvalues associated
with each factor represent the variance explained by that particular linear component and
SPSS also displays the
eigenvalue in terms of the
percentage of variance
explained (so, factor 1
explains 31.696% of total
variance). It should be clear
that the first few factors
explain relatively large
amounts of variance
(especially factor 1) whereas
subsequent factors explain
only small amounts of
variance. SPSS then extracts
all factors with eigenvalues
greater than 1, which leaves
us with four factors. The
eigenvalues associated with
these factors are again
displayed (and the
percentage of variance
explained) in the columns
labelled Extraction Sums of Squared Loadings. The values in this part of the table are the same
as the values before extraction, except that the values for the discarded factors are ignored
(hence, the table is blank after the fourth factor). In the final part of the table (labelled
KMO and Bartlett's Test
.930
19334.492
253
.000
Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin Measure of Sampling Adequacy.
Approx. Chi-Square
df
Sig.
Bartlett's Test of Sphericity
SPSS Output 2
Total Variance Explained
7.290 31.696 31.696 7.290 31.696 31.696 3.730 16.219
16.219
1.739 7.560 39.256 1.739 7.560 39.256 3.340 14.523 30.742
1.317 5.725 44.981 1.317 5.725 44.981 2.553 11.099 41.842
1.227 5.336 50.317 1.227 5.336 50.317 1.949 8.475 50.317
.988 4.295 54.612
.895 3.893 58.504
.806 3.502 62.007
.783 3.404 65.410
.751 3.265 68.676
.717 3.117 71.793
.684 2.972 74.765
.670 2.911 77.676
.612 2.661 80.337
.578 2.512 82.849
.549 2.388 85.236
.523 2.275 87.511
.508 2.210 89.721
.456 1.982 91.704
.424 1.843 93.546
.408 1.773 95.319
.379 1.650 96.969
.364 1.583 98.552
.333 1.448 100.000
Component
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
Total
% of
Variance
Cumulative
% Total
% of
Variance
Cumulative
% Total
% of
Variance
Cumulative
%
Initial Eigenvalues Extraction Sums of Squared Loadings Rotation Sums of Squared Loadings
Extraction Method: Principal Component Analysis.
SPSS Output 3
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 7 10/12/2005
Rotation Sums of Squared Loadings), the eigenvalues of the factors after rotation are
displayed. Rotation has the effect of optimizing the factor structure and one consequence for
these data is that the relative importance of the four factors is equalized. Before rotation,
factor 1 accounted for considerably more variance than the remaining three (31.696%
compared to 7.560, 5.725, and 5.336%), however after extraction it accounts for only
16.219% of variance (compared to 14.523, 11.099 and 8.475% respectively).
SPSS Output 4 shows the table of communalities before and after extraction. Principal
component analysis works on the initial assumption that all variance is common; therefore,
before extraction the communalities are all 1. The communalities in the column labelled
Extraction reflect the common variance in the data structure. So, for example, we can say that
43.5% of the variance associated with question 1 is common, or shared, variance. Another
way to look at these communalities is in terms of the proportion of variance explained by the
underlying factors. After extraction some of the factors are discarded and so some information
is lost. The amount of variance in each variable that can be explained by the retained factors is
represented by the communalities after extraction.
Communalities
1.000 .435
1.000 .414
1.000 .530
1.000 .469
1.000 .343
1.000 .654
1.000 .545
1.000 .739
1.000 .484
1.000 .335
1.000 .690
1.000 .513
1.000 .536
1.000 .488
1.000 .378
1.000 .487
1.000 .683
1.000 .597
1.000 .343
1.000 .484
1.000 .550
1.000 .464
1.000 .412
Q01
Q02
Q03
Q04
Q05
Q06
Q07
Q08
Q09
Q10
Q11
Q12
Q13
Q14
Q15
Q16
Q17
Q18
Q19
Q20
Q21
Q22
Q23
Initial Extraction
Extraction Method: Principal Component
Component Matrix
a
.701

.685
.679
.673
.669
.658
.656
.652 -.400
.643
.634
-.629
.593
.586
.556
.549 .401 -.417
.437
.436 -.404
-.427
.627
.548
.465
.562 .571
.507
Q18
Q07
Q16
Q13
Q12
Q21
Q14
Q11
Q17
Q04
Q03
Q15
Q01
Q05
Q08
Q10
Q20
Q19
Q09
Q02
Q22
Q06
Q23
1 2 3 4
Component
Extraction Method: Principal Component Analysis.
4 components extracted. a.

SPSS Output 4
This output also shows the component matrix before rotation. This matrix contains the
loadings of each variable onto each factor. By default SPSS displays all loadings; however, we
requested that all loadings less than 0.4 be suppressed in the output and so there are blank
spaces for many of the loadings. This matrix is not particularly important for interpretation.
At this stage SPSS has extracted four factors. Factor analysis is an exploratory tool and so it
should be used to guide the researcher to make various decisions: you shouldn't leave the
computer to make them. One important decision is the number of factors to extract. By
Kaiser's criterion we should extract four factors and this is what SPSS has done. However, this
criterion is accurate when there are less than 30 variables and communalities after extraction
are greater than 0.7 or when the sample size exceeds 250 and the average communality is
greater than 0.6. The communalities are shown in SPSS Output 4, and none exceed 0.7. The
average of the communalities can be found by adding them up and dividing by the number of
communalities (11.573/23 = 0.503). So, on both grounds Kaiser's rule may not be accurate.
However, you should consider the huge sample that we have, because the research into
Kaiser's criterion gives recommendations for much smaller samples. We can also use the scree
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 8 10/12/2005
plot, which we asked SPSS to produce. The scree plot is shown below with a thunderbolt
indicating the point of inflexion on the curve. This curve is difficult to interpret because the
curve begins to tail off after three factors, but there is another drop after four factors before a
stable plateau is reached. Therefore, we could probably justify retaining either two or four
factors. Given the large sample, it is probably safe to assume Kaiser's criterion; however, you
could rerun the analysis specifying that SPSS extract only two factors and compare the results.
Scree Plot
Component Number
23 21 19 17 15 13 11 9 7 5 3 1
E
i
g
e
n
v
a
l
u
e
8
6
4
2
0

SPSS Output 5

If there are less than 30 variables and communalities after extraction are
greater than 0.7 or if the sample size exceeds 250 and the average
communality is greater than 0.6 then retain all factors with Eigen values
above 1 (Kaisers criterion).
If none of the above apply, a Scree Plot can be used when the sample size
is large (around 300 or more cases).
Factor Rotation
The first analysis I asked you to run was using an orthogonal rotation. SPSS Output 6 shows
the rotated component matrix (also called the rotated factor matrix in factor analysis) which is
a matrix of the factor loadings for each variable onto each factor. This matrix contains the
same information as the component matrix in SPSS Output 4 except that it is calculated after
rotation. There are several things to consider about the format of this matrix. First, factor
loadings less than 0.4 have not been displayed because we asked for these loadings to be
suppressed. If you didn't select this option, or didn't adjust the criterion value to 0.4, then
your output will differ. Second, the variables are listed in the order of size of their factor
loadings because we asked for the output to be Sorted by size. If this option was not selected
your output will look different. Finally, for all other parts of the output I suppressed the
variable labels (for reasons of space) but for this matrix I have allowed the variable labels to
be printed to aid interpretation.
Compare this matrix with the unrotated solution. Before rotation, most variables loaded highly
onto the first factor and the remaining factors didn't really get a look in. However, the rotation
of the factor structure has clarified things considerably: there are four factors and variables
load very highly onto only one factor (with the exception of one question). The suppression of
loadings less than 0.4 and ordering variables by loading size also makes interpretation
considerably easier (because you don't have to scan the matrix to identify substantive
loadings).

C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 9 10/12/2005
Rotated Component Matrix
a
.800

.684
.647
.638
.579
.550
.459
.677
.661
-.567
.473 .523
.516
.514
.496
.429
.833
.747
.747
.648
.645
.586
.543
.427
I have little experience of computers
SPSS always crashes when I try to use it
I worry that I will cause irreparable damage because
of my incompetenece with computers
All computers hate me
Computers have minds of their own and deliberately
go wrong whenever I use them
Computers are useful only for playing games
Computers are out to get me
I can't sleep for thoughts of eigen vectors
I wake up under my duvet thinking that I am trapped
under a normal distribtion
Standard deviations excite me
People try to tell you that SPSS makes statistics
easier to understand but it doesn't
I dream that Pearson is attacking me with correlation
coefficients
I weep openly at the mention of central tendency
Statiscs makes me cry
I don't understand statistics
I have never been good at mathematics
I slip into a coma whenever I see an equation
I did badly at mathematics at school
My friends are better at statistics than me
My friends are better at SPSS than I am
If I'm good at statistics my friends will think I'm a nerd
My friends will think I'm stupid for not being able to
cope with SPSS
Everybody looks at me when I use SPSS
1 2 3 4
Component
Extraction Method: Principal Component Analysis.
Rotation Method: Varimax with Kaiser Normalization.
Rotation converged in 9 iterations.
a.

SPSS Output 6

Use orthogonal rotation when you believe your factors should theoretically
independent (unrelated to each other).
Use oblique rotation when you believe factors should be related to each
other.
Interpretation
The next step is to look at the content of questions that load onto the same factor to try to
identify common themes. If the mathematical factor produced by the analysis represents some
real-world construct then common themes among highly loading questions can help us identify
what the construct might be. The questions that load highly on factor 1 seem to all relate to
using computers or SPSS. Therefore we might label this factor fear of computers. The
questions that load highly on factor 2 all seem to relate to different aspects of statistics;
therefore, we might label this factor fear of statistics. The three questions that load highly on
factor 3 all seem to relate to mathematics; therefore, we might label this factor fear of
mathematics. Finally, the questions that load highly on factor 4 all contain some component of
social evaluation from friends; therefore, we might label this factor peer evaluation. This
analysis seems to reveal that the initial questionnaire, in reality, is composed of four sub-
scales: fear of computers, fear of statistics, fear of maths, and fear of negative peer
evaluation. There are two possibilities here. The first is that the SAQ failed to measure what it
set out to (namely SPSS anxiety) but does measure some related constructs. The second is
that these four constructs are sub-components of SPSS anxiety; however, the factor analysis
does not indicate which of these possibilities is true.
Guided Example
The University of Sussex is constantly seeking to employ the best people possible as lecturers
(no, really, it is). Anyway, they wanted to revise a questionnaire based on Blands theory of
SPSS Output 6
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 10 10/12/2005
research methods lecturers. This theory predicts that good research methods lecturers should
have four characteristics: (1) a profound love of statistics; (2) an enthusiasm for experimental
design; (3) a love of teaching; and (4) a complete absence of normal interpersonal skills.
These characteristics should be related (i.e. correlated). The Teaching Of Statistics for
Scientific Experiments (TOSSE) already existed, but the university revised this questionnaire
and it became the Teaching Of Statistics for Scientific Experiments Revised (TOSSER).
The gave this questionnaire to 239 research methods lecturers around the world to see if it
supported Blands theory.
The questionnaire is below.
SD = Strongly Disagree, D = Disagree, N = Neither, A = Agree, SA = Strongly Agree

SD D N A SA
1
I once woke up in the middle of a vegetable patch hugging a turnip that I'd mistakenly dug
up thinking it was Roy's largest root
A A A A A
2

If I had a big gun I'd shoot all the students I have to teach A A A A A
3 I memorize probability values for the F-distribution A A A A A
4 I worship at the shrine of Pearson A A A A A
5 I still live with my mother and have little personal hygiene A A A A A
6
Teaching others makes me want to swallow a large bottle of bleach because the pain of my
burning oesophagus would be light relief in comparison
A A A A A
7 Helping others to understand Sums of Squares is a great feeling A A A A A
8 I like control conditions A A A A A
9 I calculate 3 ANOVAs in my head before getting out of bed every morning A A A A A
10 I could spend all day explaining statistics to people A A A A A
11 I like it when people tell me I've helped them to understand factor rotation A A A A A
12

People fall asleep as soon as I open my mouth to speak A A A A A
13

Designing experiments is fun A A A A A
14

I'd rather think about appropriate dependent variables than go to the pub A A A A A
15 I soil my pants with excitement at the mere mention of Factor Analysis A A A A A
16 Thinking about whether to use repeated or independent measures thrills me A A A A A
17
I enjoy sitting in the park contemplating whether to use participant observation in my next
experiment
A A A A A
18 Standing in front of 300 people in no way makes me lose control of my bowels A A A A A
19 I like to help students A A A A A
20 Passing on knowledge is the greatest gift you can bestow an individual A A A A A
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Dr. Andy Field Page 11 10/12/2005
21

Thinking about Bonferroni corrections gives me a tingly feeling in my groin A A A A A
22 I quiver with excitement when thinking about designing my next experiment A A A A A
23 I often spend my spare time talking to the pigeons ... and even they die of boredom A A A A A
24
I tried to build myself a time machine so that I could go back to the 1930s and follow Fisher
around on my hands and knees licking the floor on which he'd just trodden
A A A A A
25 I love teaching A A A A A
26 I spend lots of time helping students A A A A A
27 I love teaching because students have to pretend to like me or they'll get bad marks A A A A A
28 My cat is my only friend A A A A A
The Teaching of Statistics for Scientific Experiments Revised (TOSSE-R)

Load the data in the file TOSSE-R.sav
Conduct a factor analysis (with appropriate rotation) to see the factor
structure of the data.

Would you exclude any items on the questionnaire on the basis of
multicollinearity or singularity? (Quote Relevant statistics).
Your Answer:
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 12 10/12/2005

Is the sample size adequate? Explain your answer quoting any relevant
statistics.
Your Answer:

How many factors should be retained? Explain your answer quoting any
relevant statistics.
Your Answer:
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 13 10/12/2005
What method of rotation have you used and why?
Your Answer:

Which items load onto which factors? Do these factors make psychological
sense (i.e. can you name them based on the items that load onto them?)
Your Answer:
C8057 (Research Methods II): Factor Analysis on SPSS
Dr. Andy Field Page 14 10/12/2005
Unguided Example

Re-run the SAQ analysis using oblique rotation (Use Field, 2005 to help you).
Compare the results to the current analysis. Also, look over Field (2005) and
find out about Factor Scores and how to interpret them.
Multiple Choice Questions

Go to http://www.sagepub.co.uk/field/multiplechoice.html and test yourself
on the multiple choice questions for Chapter 15. If you get any wrong, re-
read this handout (or Field, 2005, Chapter 15) and do them again until you
get them all correct.

This handout is an abridged version of Chapter 15 of Field (2005) and so is copyright
protected.
Field, A. P. (2005). Discovering statistics using SPSS (2
nd
edition). London: Sage.